Breakfast is a staple occasion in our diet, consumed by the population on a regular basis. It is eaten by over 97% of the UK population each week, with the category seeing long-term growth (+588m new occasions (Kantar).

Breakfast is one of the fastest-growing areas of the food market, with consumers taking a vested interest in not only what they consume and how they prepare their meals, but how the end result looks too.

The popularity of the ‘Instagramable’ meal, particularly brunch, is helping to evolve traditional morning meals as consumers look for versatile ingredients to add a layer of excitement and visual appeal.

More recently, and during the 2020 lockdowns, we saw consumers spending longer to prepare meals, with the average breakfast taking 7 ½ minutes (Kantar), as shoppers sought to get creative and try something a little less ordinary, such as croissants, crumpets or waffles.

“We’re conscious that for many shoppers, family breakfasts still need to be quick and easy,” comments Levi Boorer, Customer Development Director at Ferrero UK & Ireland. “Convenience is still a priority for many, so ways that shoppers can enhance their first meal of the day without investing a great deal of time are appealing.”

A key strength of Nutella is its versatility, helping shoppers to transform dishes, adding flavour to breakfast without necessarily investing a great deal of time. Consumers looking for a special breakfast can add a touch of Nutella (one heaped teaspoon, 15g) to make toast, pancakes or porridge even tastier.

“2020 was a challenging year for shoppers, so it’s understandable that in hard times, consumers turn to products that they trust for great quality and taste. Chocolate spread featured in 34% of UK households during 2020, an increase of +5% as shoppers looked for convenient, stress-free breakfast options, that didn’t require huge investments of time (Kantar). Nutella is perceived by consumers as number one for brand trust, brand love, great taste and good mood (IPSOS), and its versatility and much-loved flavour make it the ideal breakfast spread to stock throughout the year,” adds Boorer.

“As the number one brand within the spreads category, Nutella is a go-to brand to enhance a breakfast offering, retaining its relevance all year round.”

Currently, sweet treats account for over 30% of all breakfast occasions (Lumina), and pastries are seen as a staple breakfast option, with over half of Brits eating Danish pastries and croissants weekly (Opeepl). In fact, 84% of wholesalers that sell sweet bakery goods agree that croissants and Danish pastries are crucial in driving sales, meaning they are a must stock for wholesalers to remain competitive (Sweet Treats Research).

Viennoiserie remains a popular breakfast choice and increasingly wholesalers, specifically independents, are allocating more space to the product as the category continues to innovate and bring fresh NPD and pack formats to the market. This is why Lantmännen Unibake UK is deciding to restart promotion of its Thaw and Serve range – to highlight the need for wholesalers to have a provide quality pastry offering to meet that morning craving for a sweet treat.

Coffee shops and cafés remain the most popular location for shoppers when purchasing sweet bakery items, with 24% of consumers buying from this channel. In addition, croissants remain a top sweet bakery breakfast item, accounting for 15% of all breakfast occasions eaten out of home – and here quality is the key. Indeed, 44% of croissant buyers select quality as a reason for choosing the establishment.

“Wholesalers should stock high-quality products made with real butter, with a light open texture,” says Kate Sykes, Marketing Manager, Lantmännen Unibake UK.

Schulstad Bakery Solutions Croissants are available in three different flavours: classic All Butter, indulgent Chocolate and flaky Almond which is filled end-to-end with smooth almond paste and topped with flaked almonds.

“Both range and quality are essential considerations for foodservice wholesalers when choosing which pastries and croissants to include in their offering,” adds Sykes. “Schulstad Bakery Solutions’ wide range of sweet treats assures customer satisfaction in both of these areas. Caterers should be offered popular variants such as the Maple Pecan Plait, Cinnamon Swirl, Vanilla Crème Crown and Plain and Filled Croissants – all of which offer premium quality and great taste.”

The Schulstad Bakery Solutions’ Thaw & Serve Danish Pastries range is an ideal option for wholesalers looking to provide enhanced breakfast provision with a tasty, authentic and high quality sweet pastry option. Perfectly baked and ready to serve after thawing, the Thaw & Serve Danish Pastry range allows caterers without ovens to reduce preparation time significantly, as well as to control costs and wastage. Croissants remain a top sweet bakery breakfast item, accounting for 15% of all breakfast occasions eaten out of home – and here quality is the key. Indeed, 44% of croissant buyers select quality as a reason for choosing the establishment.

“Wholesalers should stock high-quality products made with real butter, with a light open texture,” Sykes recommends.

Schulstad Bakery Solutions Croissants are available in three different flavours: classic All Butter, indulgent Chocolate and flaky Almond which is filled end-to-end with smooth almond paste and topped with flaked almonds.

Both range and quality are essential considerations for foodservice wholesalers when choosing which pastries and croissants to include in their offering. Schulstad Bakery Solutions’ wide range of sweet treats assures customer satisfaction in both of these areas. Caterers should be offered popular variants such as the Maple Pecan Plait, Cinnamon Swirl, Vanilla Crème Crown and Plain and Filled Croissants – all of which offer premium quality and great taste.

Paul Baker, Founder of St Pierre Groupe, comments: “Our advice is to focus on not just the biggest sellers, but the strongest growers.”

The bakery category turned in sales close to £3 billion for the year to mid-Feb (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th 2022), holding steady over the last quarter, but 9 per cent up on two years ago.

White bread and wholemeal are still hugely significant in the bread subcategory, at £743 m and £178 m annually (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th, 2022). However white has declined 6 per cent in the last year and wholemeal 9 per cent in the last year (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th, 2022), making it all the more important for wholesalers to think about adding excitement and building sales in growth areas.

Rolls are the standout performer, with 4.9 per cent year on year growth to £366m, over this period (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th, 2022).

In the last 12 weeks St Pierre Brioche Burger Buns has become the 4th biggest selling roll in the UK. St Pierre Seeded Brioche Burger Buns now sell over £3m annually (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th, 2022).

Morning goods have also continued to grow, creating a sub category now worth £1.135bn, up 3.4 per cent on a year ago (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Jan 15th, 2022), making breakfast time a win-win either way for wholesalers.

Products performing particularly well in morning goods include brioche, pains au chocolat, and sweet buns– all of which have seen growth in the last 12 weeks, of 9, 23 and 23 per cent respectively (Nielsen Value Sales – L12 Weeks Feb 15th, 2022).

“Stocking a wide variety of items which meets the demands of the consumer offers huge potential for wholesalers. To help maximise basket spend and overall sales, wholesalers should look to be strategic with their in-store merchandising as this will encourage upselling,” adds Baker.

“The other key thing for wholesalers to note is that chefs (whether at home or in foodservice) are not restricted by a ‘product name’. People are looking for consistent quality for every meal occasion. Bakery is so versatile, and a burger bun works just as well for a burger as it does for an upgraded breakfast roll. Creative merchandising will help drive this home for wholesale shoppers. Placing burger buns and other bakery staples within the breakfast fixture help to highlight their versatility – and perhaps most importantly, drive sales. Shoppers are looking for products that offer versatility to help minimise waste and cater for multiple meal occasions. They want foods that offer taste, convenience, versatility, and good value, so there is an opportunity for bakery brands, with long-life multi-pack formats, like those from St Pierre, Baker Street and Paul Hollywood.”

Products that offer an extended shelf-life are a must-stock for wholesalers, enabling strong bakery offering year-round and minimising the risk of wastage for retailers and operators alike.

St Pierre Groupe works closely with wholesalers in joint business planning, and also help them empower retailers to be strategic with their in-store merchandising, as this encourages upselling and maximises shoppers’ basket spend. Eye-catching displays play an important role in prompting spontaneous purchase decisions and inspire shoppers to trade up. St Pierre, for example, offers a choice of attractive freestanding display units, which helps to utilise floor space efficiently.

“Wholesalers should encourage retailers to focus on both take home and food to go opportunities and cross-merchandise products to inspire consumers to trade up, such as St Pierre’s Brioche Buns, eggs, avocado and bacon for an on-trend breakfast sandwich,” Baker suggests. “Retailers could also merchandise simple breakfast solutions next to each other. A simple way to do this is to put spreads next to the bakery section rather than with home baking products. It’s also important to stock the essentials, like sliced loaves, as well as products that fit current trends, such as brioche which helps to elevate traditional dishes. Ranging for the modern consumer is all about choice – adapting a good, better, best approach to fixtures is a way for retailers to drive sales.”

St Pierre Groupe forecasts a growth in the market as the nation emerges from lockdown, with stay home sales continuing thanks to flexible working but more people out and about, and stocking St Pierre Groupe’s brands is the ideal way for wholesalers to get their share of the action in both areas.

In the last 12 months as a nation we have consumed 13 million more packs of morning goods and 3 million extra units of rolls (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 12th 2022).

The other driver is the rising cost of living, which means shoppers and other end users of our products increasingly want value and less waste. All of the St Pierre Groupe brands are well placed to help, by offering an extended shelf-life, resulting in growth across the board. The company’s brands have enjoyed 67 per cent growth in the last two years, making it the fastest growing bakery supplier (Nielsen Value Sales – L52 Weeks Feb 15th, 2022).

Cereal and snacks giant Kellogg’s has announced salt in one of its biggest cereal brands – Special K – has been reduced by an average of 20 per cent across the product range.

The news follows on from the launch of its decade long Wellbeing Plan, announced in 2021, that pledged to improve its food and invest in helping people make better choices.

Salt is used in cereal not only to add flavour, but also to enhance other ingredients so even the slightest recipe change can make a difference to taste. Kellogg’s team of food and sensory experts used techniques that take into consideration how people’s taste buds react to flavours to change the recipe, reducing the amount of salt but managing to keep the flavour the same.

Over ten new recipes were created to find the right one that kept the famous Special K taste that people love. When the new recipe was tested with Special K fans, 59 per cent preferred the new recipe. The cereal was developed in 1955 originally for men and it now appears on the breakfast tables of nearly three million people across the UK.

New equipment was added to the Special K production process in Kellogg’s factory in Wrexham, North Wales to enable the manufacturer to make the new recipe food.

Catherine Logan, Kellogg UKI Wellbeing Lead, said: “We are committed to making the best quality food and helping people to make better choices in the morning. It’s taken Kellogg’s food developers 12 months to reformulate the well-loved Special K cereal to include less salt but keeping the same iconic taste.”

The recipe change makes 70 per cent of the Special K cereal range non-HFSS.

Coco Pops just got a whole lot nuttier, as Kellogg’s has announced it is launching a new flavour of its much-loved chocolatey cereal.

Limited-edition Hazelnut Choc Flavour Coco Pops is on shelves for one year only.

With 30% less sugar than other chocolate flavoured cereals (IRI), the tasty new breakfast option will magically transform milk into a chocolatey hazelnut flavour. Kellogg’s Coco Pops experts spent over a year at the business’ Manchester-based factory perfecting the new taste which combines cocoa with notes of hazelnut.

The launch follows limited edition Strawberry & White Choc Flavour Coco Pops that landed on shelves last year, with shoppers buying over 4,000 boxes of the cereal every day in 2021 (IRI).

With fans of the cereal often taking to Twitter to recommend combining original Coco Pops with hazelnut milk-alternatives, the new addition to the range is expected to prove popular.

Sophie Daniels, brand manager at Kellogg’s says: “We are so excited to bring out a new limited edition Coco Pops flavour and we hope that kids and grown-ups alike enjoy it as much as we do. We know that our fans enjoy eating their Coco Pops with hazelnut milk-alternatives, so we’re hoping this new Hazelnut Choc flavour is a hit.’’

Amalia Diamanti, Kellogg’s food designer, said: ‘’We spent over 12 months developing the new cereal to ensure it was the perfect flavour combination of cocoa and hazelnut. Coco Pops has such a magical way of transforming milk into a chocolatey swirl, and hazelnut flavour is a natural pairing with it so we can’t wait to hear what everyone thinks.”

In 2018, Kellogg’s reduced sugar in Original Coco Pops by 40 per cent to help families make healthier choices in the morning. This followed a reduction of 14 per cent in 2017, meaning Coco Pops now has half the sugar it did five years ago. The original variety, as well as this new limited edition, are non HFSS (non-high in fat salt sugar) cereals. ‘

 

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